Living the Dream
The Fullerton Model Home in the Mungo Sterling Bridge Community showcases single floor living at its finest
By Katherine Pettit. Photos by Jay Browne
For many of us, the kitchen is the heart of the home. And in this open plan world, that means art and science combined into one functional and beautiful workspace and living area. This home does not disappoint on any front. It’s light and bright, but not overly so. (Sorry, HGTV. Most people like a spot of color here and there.)
The kitchen countertops are quartz while the backsplash is gray. The stained maple cabinets add a contrast in rich brown and the room feels larger than it is, with sightlines into the dining area and across the island into the living area.
“This home is part of our Premier product line, showcasing the single-level lifestyle that so many buyers are seeking,” says Kim O’Quinn of Mungo Homes. Comfortable bar seating invites conversation during food and drink prep time and the chef is never cut off from family or friends. The raised, two-level island does provide a bit of separation so that everything doesn’t have to remain spotless over the course of the evening. The guests will never see those dishes in the sink. The host can entertain and interact with comfort.
Kim points out the split floor plan, with the primary bedroom at opposite ends of the house from the slightly smaller bedroom at the front. “This particular house was designed to appeal to a variety of buyers,” she says. “Empty-nesters require fewer bedrooms (three in this model), but it’s important to have a room for an older family member, or the last child left at home.”
The exterior is red brick and the garage opens into the front hall. The back yard is small, which is great for low-maintenance living. Fenced-in yards provide protection for the grandchildren who want to kick their soccer balls, and for letting the family pup outside when you aren’t ready to put on your shoes and find your leash.
The entryway offers the first glimpse at archways, an element which is repeated throughout the house. Over the front door is a transom, providing light – another important element in every room. Judges panel adds elegance to the entry hall, while the flooring is a darker River Birch Edisto gray which carries through into the kitchen.
Interior Designer Megan Fry, of Model Home Interiors in Durham, NC, understands what a variety of potential buyers have in common. “This particular home appeals to families in a broad age range,” she explains. “For the most part, this isn’t their first home. They may be moving up or downsizing and they’ve traveled, so their tastes can be a bit eclectic. One important fact is that they know what they like.”
Megan points out a massive, dark curio cabinet in the dining area. “People often have a treasured piece of furniture that will move with them, no matter what the style of the house,” she says. “This piece is here to show that with these 12-foot ceilings oversized furniture can work, even against a more modern dining room table – perhaps with mixed seating.”
She envisions that buyers are drawn to this Premier home, at least in part, because of its adaptability to a lifestyle that works. And bland isn’t a part of the design. An accent wall in the living area offers a contrast to the rest of the interior walls. “The wood is a bit rough, and darker than the walls,” Kim says. “We call these touches “memory makers” because someone walking through several homes may remember the house they really liked with the gray wooden wall in the living room.”
A gas fireplace in the living area adds a cozy affect in the winter months and a mantel invites stockings hung by the chimney during the holidays. The living, kitchen and outdoor porch are great for parties.
Kim and Megan both like that screened-in porch with its comfortable seating and outdoor fireplace. It’s the perfect place to relax with friends in the cool of the evening, as the children play outside. I would live there, especially from March until November. (A glass jar of oversized domino tiles adds a whimsical touch, reminding us all that adults need more playtime – especially in these times.)
The laundry room is large and well-planned. It’s off the kitchen and central to both bedrooms. In the primary bedroom a king-sized bed fits comfortably, and a desk for at-home work could go nicely into a corner of the room. The private bath is large and leads into an equally expansive walk-in closet. The primary bathroom countertop is “Snow White” quartz, elegant and practical. The bedroom is a sanctuary, especially for those who have older or younger family in the home.
The upstairs includes a bedroom and hallway bathroom. It might be a perfect home office as a getaway from the family. Or, it could serve a combination of needs; a bed tucked away in the corner for guests when needed, and an office nook that keeps at-home work separate, but connected.
In this room, three black, industrial dome sconces are appealing and eclectic. In fact, all the overhead and wall lighting offer a variation on a theme. No fancy teardrop chandeliers here. You’ll find a bit of wood with glass, or perhaps more casual matt finishes. It works.
Walk-in, unfinished storage is great. It’s easily accessible and tucked away behind a door on the second floor.
Will this model ever be for sale? “Yes,” says Kim, but not until the Sterling Bridge community is complete. Meanwhile, people looking to move up, or downsize can get new ideas as they walk through this spaciously compact house and perhaps find another home in the neighborhood.
Megan Fry wants people to feel joy when they visit the house. “I hope that they will see the appeal of this Mungo neighborhood, walk in the front door, and say, “I can see myself living here.”